Vol.11, No. 2, 2003

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    A Note on the Social Acceptance of Ducks and Their Products in Wad Medani, Sudan
    (Faculty of Agriculture, University of Khartoum, Shambat, Sudan, 2003) El Beeli, M.Y.M ; Musharaf, N.A. ; Abdalla, H.O. ; Bessei, W.
    Social acceptance of duck raising and consumption of their products were investigated via a questionnaire conducted among the inhabitants of Wad Medani city (Gezira State – Sudan). About 22% and 25% of them have, respectively, eaten ducks' eggs and meat before. They preferred ducks' eggs (26%) and meat (38%) to that of chicken's. The taste of ducks' eggs and meat, as evaluated by the inhabitants, was 39%, 62% as excellent, 36%, 32% as good, 21%, 6% as fair and 4%, 0.0% as bad, respectively. The study showed that, about 60% of the sample will consume ducks' products if they are accessible, and home duck keeping practice is acceptable to 68.78% of the sample. There are only very few religious and social taboos that discourage or prohibit raising and consuming ducks' eggs and meat in central Sudan.
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    A Note on the Proximate Analysis of Nine Sudanese Grain Sorghum Varieties
    (Faculty of Agriculture, University of Khartoum, Shambat, Sudan, 2003) Khair, M.A.M. ; Krause, R.
    The present study aimed at providing the proximate analysis of the grains of nine sorghum varieties. The results showed that, in all varieties, crude fibres, crude fats and ash constituted (collectively) only 7.2% - 8.3% of the dry matter of the grains. The sum of the nitrogen free extracts (NFE) and crude protein (CP), on the other hand, constituted 91% to 92% of the dry matter of the grains. In all varieties, the nutritive values of the grains, therefore, depend mainly on their contents of NFE and CP. In animal feeding, sorghum grains are usually used as energy sources, whereas groundnut seed cake is used as CP source. Correction of the relatively low CP of the grains of most of the varieties with groundnut seed cakes will, therefore, eliminate or reduce the difference in the nutritive values among the varieties. Selection of sorghum grains as animal feed could then be based solely on their market prices.
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    Some Aspects of Resource Productivity and Farmer's Allocative Efficiency in Irrigated Agriculture: A Case Study of Gezira Scheme
    (Faculty of Agriculture, University of Khartoum, Shambat, Sudan, 2003) Babikir, O.M. ; El Feil, M.A.
    This study is concerned with resource productivity and farmer's allocative efficiency in the Gezira scheme. One hundred and four respondents were randomly selected through a field survey during 1997/98 season. A Cobb-Douglas production function was fitted to the data. The results indicated that farmers were less efficient in allocating cotton and dura labour and relatively more efficient in allocating wheat and groundnut labour. The efficiency of capital and farm income utilization was also low. This was true for all crops except dura. The results indicated some sort of inefficiency in resource allocation because of the farmers' limited choice of cropping pattern and the inelastic supply of some inputs in addition to the risk –aversion nature of tenants.
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    Effect of Stem Cuttings Size and Defoliation of Donor Plant on Rooting and Field Survival of Propagules of Five Morus Species (Mulberry)
    (Faculty of Agriculture, University of Khartoum, Shambat, Sudan, 2003) Eltayeb, M.T.A. ; Warrag, E.I.
    The aim of this study was to develop vegetative propagation by stem cuttings suitable for forest nurseries and to investigate field survival of the propagules of five Morus species (Mulberry). The effect of hormonal treatment, size of cuttings and defoliation before excision of branches on rooting of cuttings was studied under forest nursery conditions. Survival of propagules was evaluated at five spacings under field conditions. Morus alba gave the highest rooting percent (>90%) and M. mesozygia was the least. Smaller cuttings and application of rooting hormone (2% IBA) increased the rooting percent. Cuttings from defoliated plants (8-10 days before cutting the branches) gave 100% rooting for the five species. Survival of propagules was high with significant variation between species and between spacings. The results showed that mulberry species can be propagated from stem cuttings under forest nursery conditions with high survival rate. It is calculated that a field of one hectare can provide more than 0.5 million cuttings every four months with expected high percentage of rooting (>90 %) and field survival of propagules (>80%).
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    Provenance Variation in the Response of Cordia africana Seedlings to Soil Drying
    (Faculty of Agriculture, University of Khartoum, Shambat, Sudan, 2003) Khalil, A.A.M. ; Abdelgadir, O.M.
    The morphological and physiological responses of seedlings of three Cordia africana (L.) provenances to soil drying were studied to evaluate the possible adaptational mechanisms responsible for the survival of this species in drought-prone environments. The seeds were collected from three sites along the natural habitat of C. africana in Sudan (viz: Edamazin, Jebel Marra and Kordofan). The experiment was conducted under natural conditions, using long soil columns with high water holding capacity. Drought had significant impacts on the physiological and morphological characteristics of C. africana seedlings, regardless of seed origin. However, the results revealed considerable intraspecific variation in the response of seedlings to drought among the studied provenances. The Kordofan provenance sustained the highest stomatal conductance, leaf water potential and transpiration rate under limited soil water availability, an attestation of drought-avoidance mechanisms. Seedlings from Edamazin and Jebel Marra origins showed simultaneous reduction in stomatal conductance, leaf water potential and transpiration rate as soil drying intensified, a characteristic response associated with drought-tolerance genotypes. Drought resulted in a significant reduction in total biomass of all provenances, which was a function of reduced shoot weight, but the root weight was not affected. The root/shoot ratio of water-stressed seedlings increased by more than 1.6 times in all provenances. The Kordofan provenance showed the highest root/shoot ratio in the dry treatment, which might explain its superiority in the maintenance of shoot water status as drought intensified. With the exception of the Kordofan provenance, the root distribution profile was adversely affected by soil drying. The results indicated that the Kordofan provenance may be a more suitable seed source for afforestation in drought-prone environments.